WAFLA Labor Conference
I'm Lacy Gray with Washington Ag Today.
The 10th annual Washington Farm Labor Association Labor Conference will be held Thursday, February 13 at the Tri-Cities Convention Center in Kennewick. The all day conference entitled "Lighting the Way" will address labor and employment needs of seasonal employers. Twelve workshops conducted by experts in labor and employment matters are scheduled to cover such topics as immigration reform from the workers and small business standpoint, handling drama in the workplace, what to know now about DOL wage and hour inspections, I-9 audits best practices, and navigating garnishments. Key-note speaker will be Tom Nassif, president and CEO of Western Growers, an agricultural leader who was instrumental last year in negotiating the agriculture portion of the Senate bill with Arturo Rodriguez, president of the United Farm Workers. Nassif talks about some of the reasons growers have trouble finding workers.
NASSIF: A lot of people just don't want to do the kind of work that's required to harvest a crop in the field working outdoors. It's migrant work so they have to follow the crops in order to have a more of a full time kind of employment. And some of it's probably due to increased enforcement.
As far as how many people view the H-2A guest worker program Nassif says this.
NASSIF: We wanted to do a poll that was an independent poll to find out what the nation really believed, and we found in the poll that it's into the seventy percentile that are favorable toward a guest worker program for agricultural farm workers.
To find out more and to register for the all day labor conference visit Washington Farm Labor Association's website at wafla.org..
That's Washington Ag Today.
I'm Lacy Gray on the Ag Information Network.